Back inda day when Iran and US were tight, we gavem a reactor w/ weapon-grade uranium

truroutetruroute Posts: 251
edited August 2006 in A Moving Train
We really need to quit doing this.

Its all the Russian's fault. Damn commies.


http://www.azstarnet.com/allheadlines/143862

Iran's N-plans rely on reactor U.S. gave shah
By Sam Roe
Chicago Tribune
Tucson, Arizona | Published: 08.27.2006
advertisementIn the heart of Tehran stands one of Iran's most important nuclear facilities, a dome-shaped building where scientists have conducted secret experiments that could help the country build atomic bombs. It was provided to the Iranians by the United States.
The Tehran Research Reactor represents a little-known aspect of the international uproar over the country's alleged weapons program. Not only did the U.S. provide the reactor in the 1960s as part of a Cold War strategy, America also supplied the weapons-grade uranium needed to power the facility — fuel that remains in Iran and could be used to help make nuclear arms.
As the U.S. and other countries wrestle with Iran's refusal to curb its nuclear capabilities, an examination of the Tehran facility sheds light on the degree to which the United States has been complicit in Iran's developing those capabilities.
Saturday Iran inaugurated a heavy-water plant, expanding its nuclear program only days before the U.N. deadline that threatens sanctions unless Tehran curbs activities the West fears are meant to make atomic weapons, The Associated Press reported.
The move was the latest defiance by Iran to concerns expressed by the U.N. Security Council. Iran's hard-line President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad shrugged off the possibility of sanctions, insisting they would not slow Iran's nuclear ambitions.
"We tell the Western countries not to cause trouble for themselves because Iranian people are determined to make progress and acquire technology," Ahmadinejad said after opening the plant.
He stressed his government's contention that the nuclear program is peaceful — intended only to produce fuel for nuclear power plants.
Though the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations' nuclear watchdog, has found no proof Iran is building a bomb, the agency says the country has repeatedly concealed its nuclear activities from inspectors. And some of these activities have taken place in the U.S.-supplied reactor, IAEA records show, including experiments with uranium, a key material in the production of nuclear weapons.
U.S. officials point to those activities as evidence Iran is trying to construct nuclear arms, but they do not publicly mention that the work has taken place in a U.S.-supplied facility.
The U.S. provided the reactor when America was eager to prop up Iran's shah, who also was aligned against the Soviet Union at the time. After the Islamic revolution toppled the shah in 1979, the reactor became a reminder that in geopolitics, today's ally can become tomorrow's threat.
Also missing from the current debate over Iran's nuclear intentions is emerging evidence that its research program may be more troubled than previously known.
The Bush administration has portrayed the program as a sophisticated operation that has skillfully hidden its true mission of making the bomb. But in the case of the Tehran Research Reactor, a study by a top Iranian scientist suggests otherwise.
After a serious accident in 2001 at the U.S.-supplied reactor, the scientist concluded that poor quality control at the facility was a "chronic disease." Problems included carelessness, sloppy bookkeeping and a staff so poorly trained that workers had a weak understanding of "the most basic and simple principles of physics and mathematics," according to the study, presented at an international nuclear conference in 2004 in France.
The Iranian scientist, Morteza Gharib, told the Chicago Tribune that management of the facility had improved in the past three years. When asked whether sloppiness at the reactor might have contributed to some of Iran's troubles with the IAEA, Gharib wrote in an e-mail: "It is always possible, for any system, to commit infractions inadvertently due to lack of proper bookkeeping."
Jeffrey Lewis, an arms control expert at Harvard University, said bungling might be to blame for some infractions, but the Iranians clearly concealed major nuclear activities, such as building a facility to enrich uranium. "This was not an oversight," he said.
Another overlooked concern about the Tehran reactor is the weapons-grade fuel the U.S. provided Iran in the 1960s — about 10 pounds of highly enriched uranium, the most valuable material to bomb makers.
This uranium has already been burned in the reactor, but the "spent fuel" is still highly enriched and could be used in a bomb. Normally, spent fuel is so radioactive that terrorists could not handle it without causing themselves great harm. But the spent fuel in Iran been stored for so long that it is probably no longer highly radioactive and could be handled easily, U.S. scientists say.
The fuel is about one-fifth the amount needed to make a nuclear weapon, but experts said it could be combined with other material to construct a bomb.
Post edited by Unknown User on

Comments

  • rebornFixerrebornFixer Posts: 4,917
    Uh huh ... All this kind of shit is the direct legacy of the Cold War. U.S. support for what would become Al Qaida included ...
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